Animal Behavior and Cognition (Print ISSN: 2372-5052 Online ISSN: 2372-4323) publishes original empirical research and theoretical reviews on all aspects of animal behavior and cognition. The journal is multi-disciplinary, and so welcomes submissions from those studying animal behavior, behavioral ecology, ethology, philosophy, cognitive science, and comparative psychology.

Articles published in Animal Behavior and Cognition are feely available and rigorously peer-reviewed, allowing readers around the world to have easy access to all content published in Animal Behavior and Cognition. Authors of accepted papers are not charged any fees to publish their work or to publish their papers as open access, thus preserving the integrity of the peer-review process while still allowing for open access to all published content.

The mission of the journal and its editorial board is to advance discussion on all aspects of animal behavior and on the nature of cognitive processes as they manifest in nonhuman species. Although Animal Behavior and Cognition welcomes comparative papers in which two or more species are studied or discussed, we also welcome submissions that focus on a single species toward better understanding its behavior, learning, and cognitive processes. In addition, we recognize and appreciate that excellent research with nonhuman species can occur in laboratories, zoos, sanctuaries, and field sites, and can take the form of experimental or non-experimental design. A full understanding of the behavior and cognition of a species (or groups of species) comes only when animals are studied in varied contexts using varied methodology. We also encourage submissions from researchers at institutions large and small, and we provide a mechanism through our Replication Reports for those who have the time and resources to undertake replications of published outcomes to report those replication efforts. In the near future, Animal Behavior and Cognition anticipates introducing a pre-registered submission format, in which research teams can submit rationale and detailed methods for peer-review before undertaking data collection, with the assurance that accepted pre-registered papers would be published in the journal after data collection and analysis. Articles are assessed based on their potential to further knowledge and inspire further research, rather than on their capacity to attract media attention.

Animal Behavior and Cognition also recognizes the need to publish theoretical reviews and reviews of empirical work focused on relevant topics to the journal’s scope. Animal Behavior and Cognition offers multiple submission formats to support such reviews, including Target Review articles, which allow for commentaries to follow the target article, and can provide readers with a thorough overview of an area in which many of the top researchers working in that area provide thoughts and comments on a focal issue of relevance.

Science progresses through debate, and animal behavior offers a compelling example of an area in which the same objectively observed phenomenon can generate quite different ideas about the proximate or ultimate mechanisms underlying that behavior. Animal Behavior and Cognition encourages discussion of such differences in opinion through its Opposing Viewpoints articles. This is a unique feature of this journal in which two authors (or teams of authors) present contrasting perspectives on some aspect of animal behavior or animal cognition. Unlike other publishing models, in which such debates proceed in a serial fashion, this article type involves both individuals or both groups presenting their perspective at the same time, and with coordination of those arguments by the authors. Animal Behavior and Cognition presents the opportunity to further such discussion on both specific aspects of scientific advancements in our field, as well as with regard to broader issues facing our field. For example, authors may choose to debate the merits of research in zoological facilities versus laboratories, or the potential for our field to capitalize on citizen science. Thus, this journal provides a unique forum for discussion and debate that might serve to move thinking forward.